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Social Practice in Art & Design: Social Practitioners

Finding information about artists in exhibition catalogs

Exhibition catalogs are an excellent source of information about artists and their work.  Thematic exhibitions will provide you with more artists working with similar themes or ideas. Sometimes, it's hard to find out what exhibitions artists have been in because the library catalog may not list all of the artists who participated in an exhibition. 

The CONTEMPORARY ARTIST INDEX is a great place to look for contemporary or emerging photographers, artists, and designers whose work appears in group exhibitions or other publications featuring multiple artists in the library's collection. You can get a list of books that feature an artist, then click on a title to see all the artists featured in that book. It's a good way to get additional information about artists and to explore artists you may not already know.

The Contemporary Artist Index is a resource developed and maintained by the Gund Library staff. Use it to search for artists, artists groups, photographers, craftspeople, designers, and design firms whose work appears in select publications in the library's collection.

Some socially engaged artists

There are many socially engaged artists and designers.  Below are a few that have been suggested by CIA faculty and staff for inclusion in this guide. This list is far from comprehensive! Click the names to see results in the library's catalog. Don't forget to also check the Contemporary Artist Index (see the box to the left of this one for more information about CAI) or the periodical indexes discussed on the "Finding articles" tab of this guide for more information on these artists. 

Mel Chin

Suzanne Lacy

Rikrit Tiravanija

Liam Gillick

Gillian Wearing

Thomas Hirschhorn

Santiago Sierra

Felix Gonzales-Torres

Martha Rosler

Rick Lowe

Theaster Gates

Grant Kester

Richard Renaldi

Olafur Eliasson



Some social innovation design firms

Finding images in CIA's Gund Library's image resources

The library provides access to millions of high quality images for you to use for your studies. Please be sure to check them out!

If you are off campus, you will need to log-in to a proxy using the same username and password you use to log-on to a computer on campus.